Over 1,800 digital professionals attend 6th edition of ArabNet Riyadh

Princess Reema bint Bandar Al-Saud participated in a panel that tackled building an innovation economy.
Updated 12 December 2017
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Over 1,800 digital professionals attend 6th edition of ArabNet Riyadh

Over 1,800 regional and international digital professionals, leaders and entrepreneurs gathered at ArabNet Riyadh — the largest and most influential digital conference in the Kingdom — to discuss the future of digital business in the region.
The event kicked off on Monday and the main conference day started on Tuesday at Burj Rafal Hotel Kempinski.
The event is held under the patronage of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), hosted by King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), supported by Badir Program for Technology Incubators and sponsored by top companies in the Kingdom, including the strategic sponsor, STC, and other sponsors like InspireU, Al-Ahli Bank (NCB), Digital Media Services (DMS) and Al-Khaleejiah.
The opening ceremony featured an interactive session between Badir CEO Nawaf bin Attaf Al-Sahhaf and ArabNet CEO Omar Christidis.
Al-Sahhaf highlighted the efforts of Badir in enabling entrepreneurs and individual investors to effectively communicate and build sustainable strategic partnerships in order to support and develop successful technology projects in the Kingdom. He said that both Badir and ArabNet share the mission of helping grow the knowledge economy in the region.
Christidis said the conference highlighted the latest trends and opportunities in the Saudi market, in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program 2020, focusing on the development of the ecosystem and transformation of the Kingdom’s economy into a knowledge-based economy.
The opening ceremony was followed by a panel that tackled building an innovation economy. The panel, part of the Digital Transformation Forum, featured prominent public and private sector leaders such as Princess Reema bint Bandar Al-Saud, deputy of planning and development — General Sport Authority, and president of Mass Participation Federation; Basem Al-Sallom, deputy governor for marketing and communication at the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA); and Ahmad Al-Faifi, managing director, SAP Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Yemen.
Speaking about the digitization of education were Yousef Al-Ohali, CEO of Tatweer Education Technology Company (TETCO); Nasser Alluwaishiq, chief officer, content and digital solutions at Tatweer for Educational Services Company (T4edu); and Yasser Alobaidan, CEO of Jawraa.
ArabNet Riyadh featured the Innovation and Investment Forum with a dedicated track focusing on the investment landscape and improving the ecosystem and access to LPs and growth capital; as well as a track focused on startup growth strategies and development.


Emirates NBD opens branch in Alkhobar

Updated 20 September 2018
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Emirates NBD opens branch in Alkhobar

Emirates NBD, a banking group in the Middle East, has expanded its presence in the Kingdom with the opening of its first branch in Alkhobar in the Eastern Province. Emirates NBD now covers three key regions in Saudi Arabia with a presence in Riyadh, Jeddah and Alkhobar. 

As Saudi Arabia progresses plans for economic reform, in line with its Vision 2030, Emirates NBD’s presence builds on the growing economic and trade ties between Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Following the establishment of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council, the UAE and Saudi Arabia recently announced The Strategy of Resolve, a joint vision for economic development through 44 joint strategic projects within a five-year time frame. 

UAE-based Emirates NBD is the first non-Saudi bank with a significant branch network across the Kingdom. The bank offers retail, private, business and wholesale banking across its network of three full-fledged branches in the Kingdom, in addition to corporate finance advisory, project and syndicated finance through Emirates NBD Capital KSA, the bank’s investment banking arm.

Emirates NBD also operates in Egypt, India, Singapore, and the UK with representative offices in China and Indonesia. 

“Our presence in Saudi is integral to Emirates NBD’s growth strategy as we continue to explore opportunities in the GCC region’s largest and most dynamic economy,” said Hesham Abdulla Al-Qassim, vice chairman and managing director of Emirates NBD. 

“Saudi Arabia is in the midst of a landmark economic transformation and we look forward to continuing to support Saudi individuals and businesses looking for a trusted banking partner.” 

Emirates NBD recently renewed its partnership with the Kingdom’s Kafalah Program, which aims to promote financing to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) within the country.

Loai Abduljawad, CEO of Emirates NBD KSA, said: “Emirates NBD’s expanded network strengthens our offering to individuals and corporates in Saudi Arabia looking to invest and trade across the MENA region and beyond. Our superior value proposition, built on the bank’s unique ‘high tech + high touch’ philosophy of offering customers a modern banking experience complemented by personalized advisory services, will enable us to strengthen customer acquisition in the Kingdom as we continue to support the country’s long-term growth and development goals, as outlined in Saudi Vision 2030.” 

Emirates NBD is a leading banking group in the region. As of June 30, 2018, its total assets were 477.5 billion dirhams, ($130 billion). The group has a significant retail banking franchise in the UAE and is a key participant in the global digital banking industry, with over 90 percent of all financial transactions and requests conducted outside of its branches. The bank was declared the “Most Innovative Financial Services Organization of the Year” at the 2017 BAI Global Innovation Awards.